Tuesday, November 14, 2006


Selling Telecom Policy Reform

About a month ago, a bunch of us were asked "how do you convince non-telecom people that telecom policy reform matters?" Why would the average citizen care about telecom policy reform? Why would this issue rank above, say repairing pot-holes on the government agenda?

We have a cookbook in the report of the Telecom Policy Review Panel - a recipe for reform that has been sitting since late March. A cup of this, a teaspoon of that - changes to the CRTC, a new consumer advocacy panel, a little this, a little that. But it isn't clear that we have seen a clear picture of the final product. You know, that image of a sizzling crispy dinner coming out of the oven to make you want to run out and buy the 'set-it-and-forget-it' thing.

What is the grand vision? The pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. Where is the rainbow?

In order to move telecom policy reform higher in the priorities of average Canadians, we need to grab their imaginations. We need to demonstrate relevance. What is the vision of tomorrow's communications environment in order to adequately describe the need to change the regulatory model?

The future of communications is more than just the web - so selling Telecom Policy Reform is more than simply countering the recent Maclean's cover story.

We need to see a vision laid out that describes a better, safer, cleaner, more fun tomorrow. Will we be followers, importers and adopters of other countries' communications technologies and services? Or will be be creators, exporters and leaders?

What is your vision?

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Before "we" go off defining our visions and selling telecom reform to the average Joe Canadian, one question that has to be asked is: who is/are the "we" you talk about?Is it the service providers, the major users, the manufacturers, intersted knowledgeable people like academics, lawyers, consultants, etc. Another question is what is the objective?: academically 'pure' telecom regulation?, "nirvana" for the service providers and/or the manufacturers and/or the users whatever that "nirvana" would be? For the average Joe Canadian, I would think low rates, lots of competitors offering lots of choice in reliable and top-quality services and technology would be some of the things he/she would want. In other words, some more definition of the problem is in order I think.
Hey there Mark,

Considering the announcement today on the COnservatives overruling the CRTC on VoIP services, would love to get your perspective.
Government Overrules CRTC
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